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Seedy K’s GameCap: Clemson

This is being written very late for me after the 9:00 o’clock game. If there are typos, be gentle, I’ll correct in the morning. First correction 1/31 6:58 am. Second edit 1/31 7:54 am.

“Certain to happen.”

That’s the first listed definition of the adjective inevitable.

The question I asked myself at the moment was whether something could become more inevitable?

I like words, but can’t claim to be a semantician.

So, I’ll say yes. At least here.

The Kenny Payne era will end after this campaign. (Yes, I’ve felt that for awhile, but this seemed an exclamation point.)

The moment came at the 17:31 mark of the 2d. The Cards were down 23-39.

Manny Okorafor had just fouled PJ Hall, who was at the line for two.

Payne, as terminally laid back as he is, apparently snapped. There did not seem to be anything whatsoever unusual about the foul call. He obviously said something.

He was teed up.

Joe Girard netted both of the technical freebies. Hall then hit both of his charity tosses.

23-43.

As inescapable as it has appeared for a long while now that Louisville will have a new basketball coach next season, there just seemed something about that odd interlude that underscored how unavoidable a change is.

At that point U of L had nary an assist. With Hercy Miller off seeking some medical consultation, Ty-Laur Johnson out because of an ankle injury suffered in practice game day, and Skyy Clark eventually out with a hip injury, the Cards played the remainder of the game without a guard.

The Cardinals had also not hit a triple.

Among many other aspects that could be used to underscore how truly not good this U of L basketball team is. There are too many to enumerate.

* * * * *

That said even the most acerbic observer would have to admit that as egregiously flawed as this edition of the Cardinals is, these kids are tenacious.

Led by Tre White (21 and 11 in the 2d), the Cardinals kept coming against an underwhelming, ready-to-be-had Clemson team that isn’t within a couple time zones of the Bubble.

Even though the Cards couldn’t hit from the field. A four and a half minute drought ended with :41 left. And it came on a third chance goal tend. (Cards had a 17-2 advantage on second chances, on 21-4 offensive rebounding differential.)

That Okorafor put back pulled Louisville within 7 at 59-66.

A White triple at :29 cut the deficit to 62-66. Then Curtis Williams almost stole the Tigers’ inbound pass.

Clemson held on.

70-64 was the final.

* * * * *

Tre White’s 29 point 14 rebound effort is certainly worth a mention and tip of the hat.

The comeback effort is to be complimented, especially with the injuries and foul trouble.

Those legitimate positives notwithstanding, as Suetonius said to Julius Caesar while leading an army across the Rubicon in 49 BC, “älea iacta est.”

The die is cast.

Feisty is nice.

But far far far from satisfactory for University of Louisville basketball.

— c d kaplan